Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Are Traditional Rugs the Bold Choice Again?

You already know my love affair with striped rugs. So you'd think it would be an easy choice to pick my rug for my basement.

I've painted my walls with Benjamin Moore's Simply White (mixed in Valspar paint), and I have 90%  convinced Ryan it would be cool to paint the ceiling gray. But when it comes to a rug, I'm stuck.

I could easily buy this super cute tan & cream striped rug.
But after being inspired by this Persian rug on Emily's room last night on Secrets From a Stylist:

I thought my basement, which yes has a nautical feel, could get a great sense of warmth and grounding from a traditional rug. I am getting tired of seeing graphic bold prints from Madeline Weinrub and West Elm. These rugs have been popping up everywhere and are becoming the norm, not the exception.

Which leads me to ask...are traditional rugs the bold choice again?

I did a search for traditional beautiful rugs that won't steal the spotlight from my treasure finds and discovered some great pieces.

These first two are from Potterybarn..


The rest are from Overstock! How fabulous are these? Most are under $200 for a 5 x 8 and all are only $2.95 to ship to your home!


So which one do you like the best? Leave a comment with your favorite. Here is my couch it will go under...

Monday, August 30, 2010

Secrets Behind a Stylist

If you have been following Design Star on HGTV like me, you knew there could only be one winner, Emily Henderson. She is a little preppy chic, a little vintage, and a little eclectic crunchy...and I think she is fabulous!

Emily was raised in Oregon, and honed her skill studying design at Pratt Institute in Brooklyn. Before winning Design Star, she was a photo-shoot stylist so she is actually a professional at making designed style look effortless and purposeful...she's my new best friend (in my head)!

Here are some of her designs that landed her on Design Star:

I am so excited for her show Secrets From a Stylist, which aired last night. As a tablestop and prop stylist, Emily has an insane eye for the little pieces that really make a room unique and make you say "How can I make my room look like this room...what am I missing???"

Most design shows show the designer making the big choices, the furniture, wall color, etc. Which are all huge...but they never show you the stylized finds that take it from Step 1 (add the large elements) to Step 3 (finish with well-edited accessories & lighting)...in case you were wondering Step 2 is (layer in small chairs, side tables & ottomans).

This show follows Emily through flea markets, thrift stores, and import stores...she even found a whole store dedicated to Moraccan decor?!?!

Plus she makes spray-painting anything look so effortless. Beware basement furniture...I'm looking at you!

Last night, Emily's premiere found her tackling the home makeover of Glee co-creator (and her BFF) Ian Brennan.

Good Design + Anything Glee = My Happiness

And boy is this good design!










Emily shares her top decorating tips on Secrets From a Stylist.

Accessible Inspiration

Create a mood board to get the design you want. Pictures of furniture, colors, accessories, pattern, swatches and thoughts are great to have as a quick reference when designing.

The Ideal Height

Traditionally, wall art is hung at eye level. When working with multiple pieces, 
like the art and antlers in this space, treat the entire composition as one piece of
art and make sure the middle of the composition is at eye level.

Picture-Perfect Displays

For an eclectic collected look on bookcases, create balance without symmetry. 
Pepper books, objects and artwork evenly throughout the bookcases.

Enjoy the Process

When it comes to designing your own home, don't over think it. 
Go out and take pictures. Visualize things, have fun, play around!

Smart Upholstery

If you're going to spend a lot of money reupholstering something, use a neutral fabric 
so it'll stand the test of time. Then, add in trends, pattern and texture with pillows.

The Trick to Headboards

If you're going to create a DIY upholstered headboard, choose a solid fabric. 
It's a lot easier than making sure the pattern is perfectly straight. Also, have an extra person on hand to help you pull the fabric and staple into place.

Paint It or Not?

Emily's rule for painting furniture: if the pieces are over 50 years old, don't do it. 
You'll lose the charm and age that makes the piece beautiful. Since these Windsor chairs were only 20 years old, she decided to give them a glossy black makeover to make them truly special.

Money-Smart Pillows

Save money on pillows by sewing cases yourself. You don't have to pay 
for upholstery weight fabric for pillows, you can find fabric in the clothing 
sections that's a lot cheaper and will still work for pillows.

Perfect Vignettes

Accessories look better in threes or odd numbers. 
Also, don't be afraid to create your vignette in the store before you buy.

Gender Friendly

The best way to balance masculine and feminine design styles is to choose 
feminine patterns in a masculine palette or vice versa.

Frame It Up

An easy way to save money when framing is to pick up vintage frames when scouring flea markets, antique stores or estate sales. To give them a professional look, have mats cut at a framing shop.

Emily is beyond cool and refreshing...and this show is new favorite on my DVR list...I can't wait to see what this season has in store.

Have a great week!